Columbus, Ohio, is a great place to be if you’re a college football coach.
Ohio State announced the salaries for the 10 full-time assistants on Ryan Day’s coaching staff for the 2020 season on Monday, revealing that four of Day’s assistants will earn more than $1 million. According to the Columbus Dispatch, no other public university has ever had as many seven-figure salaries for assistant coaches.
Kerry Coombs, who returned to OSU after two seasons with the Tennessee Titans, will be the highest-paid OSU assistant. Now the Buckeyes’ defensive coordinator, Coombs has a contract that pays him $1.4 million annually. Coombs previously spent six seasons (2012-17) at OSU before his two-year stint as the Titans’ cornerbacks coach.
The three other seven-figure salaries belong to offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson ($1.2 million), co-defensive coordinator Greg Mattison ($1.133 million) and defensive line coach Larry Johnson ($1.133 million). Wilson and Johnson earned raises of $255,000 and $233,000, respectively.
At $1.1 million, Mattison was the only OSU assistant to earn seven figures in 2019. Per USA Today’s coaching salary database, Mattison was one of 24 assistant coaches to make at least $1 million last year.
OSU assistants to make just under $8 million in 2020
The payroll for OSU assistants also includes offensive line coach Greg Studrawa ($700,000), running backs coach Tony Alford ($618,000), wide receivers coach Brian Hartline ($550,000), linebackers coach Al Washington ($500,000), special teams coordinator Matt Barnes ($450,000) and quarterbacks coach Corey Dennis ($300,000).
In all, the staff will make just under $8 million for the 2020 season, up from just over $7.2 million last year. Per USA Today, that figure trails only Clemson, which is set to pay its assistants $8.145 million.
“I couldn’t have been more impressed with the performance of our coaching staff under the direction of Ryan Day in 2019,” OSU athletic director Gene Smith said. “What they accomplished both on the field and in the way they led and mentored our students-athletes was exemplary. We look forward to much of the same in 2020.”
Ohio State went 13-1 in 2019, its first season with Day in place as head coach. The Buckeyes cruised through the regular season undefeated and won the Big Ten title before dropping a heartbreaker to Clemson in the College Football Playoff semifinals.
For his efforts, Day received a lucrative contract extension. Day’s deal, which was extended through the 2026 season, was bumped up from $4.5 million in salary in 2019 to $5.375 million in 2020. That salary is set to increase to $6.5 million in 2021 and $7.6 million in 2022.
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